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IDOE Releases Preliminary ISTEP Scores

September 19, 2013
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  09/20/13 The Indiana Department of Education (IDOE) released preliminary ISTEP+ (Indiana Statewide Testing for Educational Progress) scores late afternoon on September 17 as public information.  The data released is preliminary and will be finalized after students and parents have had the opportunity to request re-scores of the Applied Skills portion of the test.

According to the IDOE, scores went up statewide, with 79.5 percent of students taking the test passing the English/Language Arts portion and 82 percent passing the Math. Those scores were up from 79.4 percent in English/Language Arts and 81.2 percent for Math in 2012.Those students passing both sections were scored at 73.5 percent.

Responding , in part, to the problems with computers shutting down during testing in the spring of this year, Superintendent of Public Instruction, Glenda Ritz, said, “First I want to acknowledge the extraordinary efforts of Indiana students, parents, educators, administrators and the employees of the Department of Education for their efforts during the administration of this test.” She added, “Despite considerable difficulties, our students improved their overall performance yet again, and deserve our congratulations.”

CTB McGraw-Hill administered the test and the demand during peak testing items led to their servers shitting down mid-test for some students.

The IDOE also broke down the scores statewide by grade. Statewide, 76.2 percent of 8th graders passed the English/Language/Arts (ELA) portions and 81.2 percent passed Math compared to 74.2 percent for ELA and 80.1 percent for Math in 2012. For 7th graders, 74.2 percent passed ELA and 80.2 percent passed Math, compared to 76.3 percent for ELA and 79.0 percent for Math in 2012.

77.7 percent of 6th graders passed their ELA and 84.0 percent passed Math, compared to 78.7 percent for ELA and 83.0 percent for Math in 2012. 79.2 percent of 5th graders passed their ELA and 87.0 percent passed Math, compared to 78.4 percent for ELA and 86.2 percent for Math in 2012.

84.3 percent of 4th grade students passed their ELA and 83.5 percent passed Math, compared to 82.4 percent for ELA and 79.1 percent for Math in 2012. Finally, 85.2 percent of 3rd graders passed their ELA and 80.1 percent passed Math, compared to 86.2 percent for ELA and 70.6 percent for Math in 2012.

Science content in the 2013 ISTEP+ was based on new science standards adopted in 2010. The Education Roundtable and the State Board of Education will consider Science cut scores in the coming weeks, according to the IDOE. The release of Science scores is anticipated in late October.

Plymouth Schools Superintendent Daniel Tyree said, “I have taken a quick look at our ISTEP+ scores and am pleased for the most part according to the scores reported to me, we had 9 scores in the 90′s, 13 scores in the 80′s, and 2 scores in the 70′s. In addition all four of our elementary schools scored in the 90′s on the IREAD test given to all Indiana third grade students. Scores are given as percentages of student’s correct answers on the test.

Tyree indicated that they will be taking a close look and put a plan of action in place where to the two scores that were in the 70’s. He said,” Anytime we have a score that is in the 70’s, I have concern.” “Plymouth Schools should never have a grade level score below the 80’s in Math and Language Arts. He added, “We might see scores in science and social studies drop below, but understand that our students know that the state does not count those results.”

Tyree indicated that the ISTEP test only measures Math and Language Arts, as opposed to reading. He said, “IREAD measures reading and only in grade 3. We could probably score in the 90’s in everything if we eliminated all of our electives and concentrated on just language arts and math.” “Some schools have chosen to do that. We have not. Every elementary student still has art, PE, and music.” he said. “Our schools also stress character education and growth in socialization.”

Tyree explained that the ISTEP+ scores may not be a true representation of the school’s progress. He said, “Lincoln Junior High scores nearly perfect every year in high school Math and that doesn’t count in either the junior high’s scores or the high school scores.” LJH has incorporated math classes that historically have been offered only at the high school level. According to Tyree, 128 students took the ECA (End of course Assessment) test in Algebra at LJH, and 127 passed.”

He said, “So we have 100 tremendously gifted students each year who show excellence in their math ability, but our state has chosen to ignore their accomplishments when posting ISTEP+ scores and sending out school grades.” “Additionally, our junior high school offers high school credit science classes and pre-engineering courses.” he said.

Tyree said, “Riverside Intermediate School is one of the only schools in the state to develop and engineering-based science curriculum.” He added, “Why does our state choose not to measure those things?”

Tyree explained the importance of extra-curricular activities in the whole-child development of a student’s education. He said, “Extra-curricular activities are important to our parents. We provide a variety of extra-curricular offerings that start at grade 4 and expand as the students move through the grades.” He said, “The extra-curricular offerings are not just in athletics. We have outstanding academic and music offerings as well.”

Jefferson Elementary:                       

3rd grade:  math 83.6; language arts, 83.6

4th grade: math, 91.4; language arts, 98.3

Menominee Elementary:                   

3rd grade: math: 78.7; language arts, 84.2

4th grade: math, 89.1; language arts, 88.7

Washington Discovery Academy:

3rd grade: math, 92.4; language arts, 91.2

 4th grade: math, 96.8; language arts, 92.1

Webster Elementary:

3rd grade: math 92.4, language arts, 92.4

4th grade: math, 98.4; language arts 93.8

Riverside Intermediate School:

5th grade: math, 83.6; language arts, 80.6

 6th grade: math, 89.3; language arts, 86.0

Lincoln Junior High:

7th grade: math 90.4; language arts, 81.5

 8th grade: math, 81.9; language arts, 76.0

District Scores:

Argos               E/LA 84.1%       Math 89.0%

Bremen            E/LA 75.9%       Math 84.6%

Culver              E/LA 79.4%       Math 81.8%

John Glenn      E/LA 78.1%        Math 87.3%

Plymouth         E/LA 84.1%        Math 87.6%

Triton               E/LA 89.1%       Math 89.9%

Union North   E/LA 76.7%       Math 85.7%

Carol Anders Correspondent

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